Beef & Sheep UpdateCattle PricesSheep Prices

Beef & Sheep Update 31st May

Cattle and Sheep in Wicklow Field, Ireland

Beef Update

IFA Livestock chair Declan Hanrahan said the tightening of supplies of factory fit cattle and strong market demand has forced factories to increase prices this week. The tide has now turned, following a number of weeks of factories taking advantage of stronger than expected supplies of cattle to reduce prices due to the weather difficulties faced by farmers,” he said. He said factory agents have been instructed this week to leave no cattle behind as the anticipated tightening of numbers of suitably fleshed cattle starts to materialise, leaving factories struggling to fill lucrative contracts. Agents are freely offering €5.10/kg and €5.15/kg base prices for steers and heifers respectively, with higher prices for larger and specialist lots. Demand for cows has remained firm, with prices ranging from €4.30/kg to over €5.00/kg depending on grade. Prices paid by factory agents in marts for finished cattle and cows are regularly well above what some are quoting. The mart trade is very much a credible alternative outlet for farmers, particularly those selling smaller numbers to secure higher prices,” he said.

Beef Price Update 30/05/2024

Base Quotes Steer €5.05/5.15kg. Heifers €5.10/5.20kg. Higher deals and flat prices for larger and specialist lots. Y Bulls R/U €5.25/5.50Kg. Cows €4.30/5.00kg.

Supply Figures as Reported by DAFM – WK 21 (26.05.2024)

AnimalNumberChange prev wk% of totalYTDYTD Change
Y Bulls2,779▲3239%50,398▼-3,010 
Bull637▼-32 2%10,587▼-260 
Steer11,244▼-948 36%256,035▲4,754
Veal-V144▼-478 0%18,656▼-11,725 
Veal-Z25▼-15 0%1,010▲99
Total31,377▼-517 100%723,429▲3,665

Official Irish Prices as Reported by DAFM – WK 21 (26.05.2024)

c/kg (Incl. VAT)U3Change prev wkR3Change prev wkO3Change prev wkP+3Change prev wk
Steers545▼-4 537▼-3 531▼-1 495▼-3 
Heifers560▼-2 545▼-2 532▼-5 482▼-6 
Y Bulls543▲0525▼-4 508▼-3 488▼-13 
Cows0▲0483▼-5 444▲1426▲0

Official GB Prices as Reported by AHDB

 SteersSteersHeifersHeifersY bullY bullCow
Change▼-4 ▼-5 ▼-3 ▼-5 ▼-2 ▼-3 ▼-0 
Price in c/kg (Incl VAT)599.0601.3597.3600.4586.1584.6474.6

Euro Price for the Most Recent Week  (€/KG Deadweight excl. VAT)

Country & Type202220.05.202325.05.2024
EU + Y BullsNot Available€ 5.01Not Available
IE + SteersNot Available€ 5.23€ 5.13
UK + Steers Not Available€ 5.72Not Available

Live Cattle Exports W/C 13.05.2024

Source: Bord Bia

Sheep Update

IFA Sheep chair Adrian Gallagher has hit out at factories for attempting to undermine the sheep trade. He said spring lamb numbers are still tight on the ground and buying is still taking place for the important of Eid ul – Adha festival in mid-June. The level of cuts attempted by factories runs the risk of undermining the trade in our key export markets and sets the sector on a very dangerous path for the remainder of the year,” he said. The IFA sheep chair said factories here are trying to drag the price down in a manner that’s way ahead of the direction of travel of prices in our key markets over the past few weeks. This is unacceptable and must stop. Adrian Gallagher called on factories to be responsible in their pricing of lambs and hoggets, and to stand firm in the market place to maintain prices to sheep farmers. He said supplies of sheep meat produced in the EU and the UK will be down this year. Factories must stand firm and maximise returns from the market place for sheep farmers. He also hit out at supermarkets in some of our markets for using cheap, chilled and frozen imported sheep meat to undermine prices to local suppliers.“

Lamb Price Update 30/05/2024

Hogget €9.00/9.30kg. Weights to 24kg. Spring Lamb €9.50/9.80/kg. Weights to 21.5kg. Higher deals groups/larger lots. Ewes €4.10/4.50/kg.

Supply Figures as Reported by DAFM – WK 21 (26.05.2024)

AnimalFigureChangeYTDYTD Change
Lambs/Hoggets18,218▼-4,797 836,520▼-83,359 
Spring Lambs16,431▲2,89865,713▼-25,097 
Ewes and Rams4,567▲39197,675▼-13,053 
Light Lambs0▼-6 71▼-35 
TOTAL39,216▼-1,514 999,979▼-121,544 

Official Irish Prices as Reported by DAFM – WK 21 (26.05.2024)

c/kg (Incl. VAT)This week Change prev. wk2023Change prev. yr
National Avg Price861.14▲7675.73▲171
YTD Avg733.19▲6624.81▲135

Official GB Prices as Reported by AHDB

 R3L Overall SQQ*Type of lamb
18/05/2024842.6827.5Old season lamb
25/05/2024895.1893.0Old season lamb
Price in c/kg (Incl VAT)1099.11096.51

Live Sheep Exports March 31st 2024

Source: Bord Bia

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